€108 million Italian port access upgrade project

Besix and Donati have been awarded a €108 million Italian port access upgrade project.
Road Structures / December 1, 2023 1 minute Read
By MJ Woof
BESIX and Donati will work in joint venture on a new link to the port of Ancona on Italy’s Adriatic Sea coast

Access to Italy’s port of Ancona will be improved once a new €108 million transport link awarded to a joint venture comprising BESIX and Donati has been completed. The new 3.3km road connection will include two tunnels and a viaduct and the work has been commissioned by Italian road firm Anas.

The project is expected to take three years to complete and a key feature of the new link will be the smart methodology being used to excavate one of the tunnel sections. This is the second collaboration in a short time for infrastructure works in Italy for BESIX and Donati.

The new link will connect the international port of Ancona to the Strada Statale 16 Adriatica at the Torrette roundabout. The BESIX-Donati joint venture will carry out the design and build of the 3.3km road as well as the two tunnels with a total length of 1,120m and a 285m viaduct.

A key award criterion for the client was that the contractors would propose an optimised design for one of the tunnels, Torrette 1. Instead of completely excavating this 470m long tunnel, which would involve moving huge volumes of material, BESIX and Donati worked out a solution to work partly underground. This smart methodology offers several advantages, including better sustainability, a shorter construction time, a lower cost and increased safety during the works.

By working partly underground, the CO2 impact of the works is drastically due to a reduction in the need to move excavated material. It also reduces surface disturbance. The road running above the tunnel does not have to be rerouted, the telecom network is less affected, the site needs less space to store the excavated soil and the costly support needed for an excavation of this size is avoided. This solution also reduces noise and dust pollution.

Next to this tunnel, BESIX-Donati will build a 285m-long viaduct with seven spans, a second bored tunnel of 650m with one lane in each direction, as well as 1.9km of new road sections connecting the works. The design phase will start at the beginning of 2024.

With this project BESIX and Donati are joining forces for the second time on major infrastructure works in Italy in a short time frame. Since 2020, they have also been working together on the Strada Statale 318 Valfabbrica project, which involves doubling this road over a distance of 3.1km, as well as building two tunnels, a viaduct and a bridge. These works will be completed in 2025.

"We are grateful for the trust Anas is placing in BESIX and Donati for a second time to assist them with important infrastructure works," said Hervé Jourquin, Country Manager Italy at BESIX. "It is an honour to be able to use our expertise to improve the accessibility between the port of Ancona and inland. We are proud that our smart methodology for the Torrette 1 tunnel convinced the client to choose us. Our extensive track record in infrastructure works, such as recently the renovation of the Huccorgne viaduct and the Annie Cordy tunnel (ex-Leopold II) in Belgium, the renovation and construction of the Coen and Velser tunnels in the Netherlands and the works on the Belgian Oosterweel Link in which BESIX plays a major role are just a few references that show that we are the right partner for these works."

“We are very happy to partner with BESIX once again, this time on the Port of Ancona road access project, which further consolidates our companies’ successful decades-long partnership for large-scale and complex infrastructure works,” said Angelica Donati, Head of Business Development at Donati. “Winning this tender was particularly gratifying for us, as our innovative design solutions for the Torrette 1 tunnel, attention to sustainability, and meticulous planning for the entire project truly made the difference in its outcome.”

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